The sweetest sound you can hear in the great outdoors is the cheerful tweeting of wild birds. The most beautiful sight in the free open-air is colorful birds flying without a care while performing their daring stunts in the air. When they hang in your territory-yard or garden, you have your own entertainment, not to be outdone by any concert or air show. Thus begins the activity of bird watching. But, how does one go about enticing this delightful entertainment to one’s own free air? Read on and you will be educated.
As with most living creatures, one of the basic needs of birds is shelter that protects them from the elements and predators. Once these free-flying birds find a bird house to their liking, your sky show will begin.
The best time to put up a bird house is well in advance of the breeding season. This, surprisingly, would be in late summer or very early fall. Migratory birds scout bird houses on their way down south for the winter and, amazingly, will locate their favorite houses in the spring as they come back. There are those aviaries that do not migrate. For these species, homes put up early in the winter are not too late.
The best birdhouses are constructed from wood. If metal is to be used, aluminum is the best choice and it should be hung in the shade to keep the birdhouse from overheating. Good birdhouses will provide for drainage at the bottom for rainwater and small holes at the top for ventilation.
Birdhouses should be constructed without perches at the entrance to deter predators such as squirrels, cats and larger birds. An overhang over the entrance will help keep the birdhouse cool and inviting.
The location of a birdhouse is, also, very important. Some birds prefer wooded, shady places while others prefer grassy areas. However, the recommended place would be in a sunny, open space away from close trees as to inhibit tree-climbing predators. A thoughtful touch is to plant berry-bearing bushes near the bird houses to provide for those midnight snacks.
The spacing of birdhouses needs to be taken into consideration. Keeping birdhouses 5-30 feet off the ground will help to divert predators and spacing them, at least, 25 feet apart will help resolve territorial issues among the birds.
By following these few tips you will insure yourself to have tenants who will come and entertain you for many a day and you will find your bird watching hours very rewarding.